Snapshot of news and events for today
||Major world indicators
- The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average edged up 34 points, or 0.4 percent, to 8,496.33.
- The dollar bought 97.40 yen, from 97.14 late in New York on Nov. 14.
Friday's U.S. Markets...
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 337.93, or 3.82 percent, to 8,497.31 -- down 4.99 percent for the week. The Nasdaq Composite Index 79.85, or 5.00 percent, to 1,516.85 -- down 7.92 percent for the week.
- The 10-year Treasury note rose 18/32 point, or $5.625 for every $1,000 invested, to yield 3.750 percent. The 30-year bond ended up 1 24/32 to yield 4.230 percent.
- The dollar was at 97.10 yen, from 97.82 yen, while the euro was at $1.2691, down from $1.2853 late Thursday
||Yesterday's action and
What happened yesterday...
- Corn: Futures posted mild corrective gains Friday to finish slightly higher for the week.
- Soybeans: Futures closed 18 cents higher than where the November contract expired.
- Wheat: Futures were lifted by dollar weakness to close the week, which triggered short-covering.
- Cotton: Futures were mixed right into the close, seeing a choppy tone as outside markets provided mixed signals.
- Lean Hogs: Lean hog futures closed weaker Friday and ended very close to week-ago levels.
- Live Cattle: Live cattle futures faced late-session selling pressure to finish on or near session lows.
||Other reports affecting agriculture
||Links to top news reports
with potential U.S. ag impact
Wall Street Journal (subscription to site required for access)
- G-20 Leaders Tighten Grip on Banks After Weekend Summit, Economists Say Emphasis on Lending Restrictions Threatens a Quick Recovery The G20 meeting this weekend saw agreement that a crackdown is needed on the kind of reckless lending that helped contribute to the current financial crisis, but some worry that too much regulation will stymie the recovery efforts.
- Banks Keep Lending, but That Isn't Easing the Crisis Banks are lending, but they're also under serious strain as they act as backstops to a larger problem -- the breakdown of securities markets and those are where the lack of lending is having the biggest impact.
- UAW Faces Prospect Of More Concessions. Some are warning labor unions to expect to make concessions, especially if the auto industry is going to be given any government funds. But the issue of funds for the auto industry remains an uncertainty given that some lawmakers are taking the view that aid to the industry would be good money after bad.
- Heinz Investors Anticipate Answer on Price Increases How much retailers are pushing back on firms like Heinz relative to prices on their products is a key focus for the firm. Also, the item notes Heinz locked in its corn and other commodity costs in early 2008 so they haven't been impacted by the mid-year peak in commodity prices.
- How to Kick Our Oil Addiction Despite Plunging Oil Prices Old habits die hard. So we asked six experts for their ideas on reducing energy demand.. The item recaps the recommendations of six industry experts on how to reduce our dependence on oil. Only one of those who offered their views mention ethanol as a key to the equation.
- Obama Hires More Clinton White House Veterans President-elect Obama continues to tap more former Clinton administration staffers for his White House team.
Ex-Rivals Stand to Gain From Meeting
- Pakistan Says It Will Need Financing Beyond IMF Deal. Pakistan says the $7.6 billion package it negotiated with the IMF falls short of what it will need. Officials signal the country needs a total of $10 billion to $15 billion.
- Japan Enters Recession as Firms Cut Spending. Economic data confirms Japan has joined Europe in recession, and officials say that a downturn in demand likely means more economic pressure ahead.
- China Needs Rural Efforts, U.N. Warns . The UN says that providing more basic services to the countryside will help the country deal with the current economic climate.
- War on the Range As gas drilling surges in the Western U.S., some ranchers are looking for ways to fight back. Ranchers and cattlemen are balking at some of the expanded drilling for gas in the West, even though drilling firms insist they're providing help to the livestock industry.
New York Times (registration to site required)
- One Cabinet Job Would Put Focus On Two Clintons In Ex-President's Global Reach, Pluses, Minuses for a Wife at State The item explores the potential impacts if Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) is tapped as Secretary of State.
- Auto Bill Would Add Oversight GOP, Bush Oppose Democrats' Plan to Aid Carmakers. Democrats are expected to unveil an auto industry aid plan that includes a ban on bonuses for some workers, a government oversight board and would prohibit companies from paying dividends to shareholders for as long as the firms owe the government money.
Facing Tough Times, Local Car Dealerships Kick Into Higher Gears
- Obama Wrote Federal Staffers About His Goals Workers at Seven Agencies Got Detailed Letters Before Election In late October, president-elect Obama sent letters to workers at seven government agencies, laying out in relative detail his plans for government operations as president.
- Clinton, Hutchison and Feinstein Could Set Off Scrambles The item explores the potential political jockeying that could be set off if Sen. Clinton is chosen for Sec. of State, if Sen. Kay Baily Hutchison (R-Texas) and Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) run for governor in their respective states.
||Monitoring the countryside
Fargo Forum (North Dakota)
Des Moines Register (Iowa)
|Laughing with, not at
||From political humorists
Jay Leno: "Here's a little...Philadelphia history for you. It was on this day in 1789 that Benjamin Franklin said those famous words: 'In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.' Death and Taxes, which ironically" were also the Secret Service code names "for John McCain and Barack Obama."
Jay Leno: "Well, there was a big meeting today between Vice President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President Dick Cheney, or as they're calling it, 'Plugged Hair meets Plugged Arteries.'"
Jay Leno: "But see that's cruel. See, I prefer to call them 'Foot In Mouth' meets 'Shot In Face.'"
Conan O'Brien: "Earlier today, President Bush was in New York, and he gave a speech about the financial crisis and other major problems facing the country. That's right. The speech was called 'So Long Suckers.'" some laughs for you